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Mike, Home Appliance Technician
Category: Appliance
Satisfied Customers: 17629
Experience:  I have been repairing appliances for 25 years, I run my own appliance repair business.
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Kenmore Elite Electric Range model 790 oven does not heat up.

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Kenmore Elite Electric Range model 790. oven does not heat up. No error codes displayed. Acts as if it is pre-heating but does not get warm. Where should I start investigating?

Visually check the heating element. If you don't see any problems pull the range out and remove the panel to uncover the terminals for the heater. Pull the terminals off and test with an ohms meter. Should read infinite. If the heater checks out you should then check the wires leading to the control panel for a damaged wire. Also check the breaker to make sure both sides are engaged. Also check across the power cord 2 hots with a volt meter to see if you have 220v.

Customer: replied 7 years ago.

All of your suggestions check out OK. Elements are OK. Sufficient power coming to appliance. What next?

Do you have a volt meter?

Customer: replied 7 years ago.

Yes but with limited electrical knowledge.

Ok, here is the thing to do, set your meter to the volts range and at the back of the control board there should be a terminal bake/oven. Set the oven to 350 and then test the bake terminal for voltage, if you see 120v then we need to check for a hi limit, but if I suspect you get low volts or 0v the control is bad.

Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Heres what I've done. Set the volt meter to AC V 1000. When touching one probe to the bake terminal and the other probe to the power in terminal, I get a reading of about 2.2. This is with the oven set to preheat to 350.
Is there a lower volts setting? Touch the black probe to the chassis of the range or a ground and then touch the red to the bake while preheating on 350. Let me know what you have then.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.

I did that initially. I tried at all setting on the voltmeter - 10, 50, 250, and touched the red probe to the terminal and the black probe to a screw attached to the chassis and got no reading at all.

Ok so one last time to humor me, test the bake terminal with the meter set on 250v put the red on the terminal and the black down to ground. Set the oven to 350. Did you try running the broiler by the way? Did the broiler work?

Customer: replied 7 years ago.

I apologize for me previous post. The screw I was using for the black probe was not grounded. This time, per your instructions, with the oven set to 350 and the voltmeter set to AC V 250, I put the red probe on the bake terminal and the black probe on a grounded chassis screw I get a reading of just under 5.

The broiler element does not work either by the way.

Ok then your oven control is bad and should be replaced. You can get the part from

Customer: replied 7 years ago.

Can you tell me what leads you to that conclusion? What exactly is the "5" reading on my voltmeter? Is that 50% of the 250 setting which would mean 110-120 V? What should the reading be under these circumstances? By the way, the scale on my voltmeter reads 0-10.

No, it means 5v the reading should be 120 meaning 120v one side of the 240v (120v)goes direct to the heater the other side (120v) goes through the control side to make the circuit and make the 240v on the heater, you have lost one side which is why the heater will not fire up. Basically the relay inside the control is not putting the 120v to the bake terminal. When your meter is set to 250 it means it will only read upto 250v. When you had it set for 1000v as you stated in a previous post I had you switch it to 250 to make sure your meter was working correctly.

Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Thank you for being so responsive and I appologize for my lack of electrical knowledge. I just want to make sure I am giving you the correct information. I may have been reading the scale wrong on this voltmeter. The scale I was looking at when I interpreted a reading of 5 is labled as AC10V (it only reads 1-10). If i look at another scale above that (labled as V-mA with a reading of 0-250) the reading is right at 120 on both legs of the circuit. I know this was not intended to be a "how to read a votmeter" course but I appreciate your patience and willingness to share your knowledge. Does this information change your diagnosis?

Ok, so this is an analog meter with the needle? Does it have a range on the dial 250v or does it just say acv?

Customer: replied 7 years ago.

It is the Actron cp7848. The control can be set to acv 10, 50, 250, 1000. It was set to 250, when I achieved a reading of 5 on the AC10V scale and a reading of 120 on the V-mA scale.

Ok I have a feeling the 120 you saw was 120v and in that case that would mean the control is good. try this set the meter to 250 and test something you know to be 120v like an outlet or test the power cord at the range end, touch the red probe to one of the hots and touch the black needle to ground. see if you get the same reading as you got on the bake terminal. Also the model number you gave was a few numbers short at the end, can you look inside the drawer and find the plate with the full model number on it. I will need the full model number to locate the hi limit if the control is good.

Customer: replied 7 years ago.

Ok. I checked an outlet, got the same reading as the terminal on the control board. So 120V it is. Now that I know how to read this thing....

Correct model number is *****

Ok according to the schematic there is no hi limit which means if we have 120v on the bake side we must have a problem on the direct side. Now what we are going to need to do is take the wires off the bake element. Touch the black needle to ground and then test each of the 2 wires for voltage. We need to have 120v on each one (make sure both wires are disconnected from the heater or you will get a false reading. If one of the wires has 0v then we need to remember which one it is because your going to need to trace where it runs to.

Customer: replied 7 years ago.

Ok it looks like the yellow wire coming from the bake terminal on the control panel to one end of the bake element shows 120V. Same thing with the blue wire coming from the broil terminal. However, the orange wire coming from L2 OUT on the control panel to one end of both the bake and broil elements does not show any voltage.

we have no voltage on L2 from the control. Ok we are getting closer to the problem. Now test the 2 hots from the power cord. put black probe on one hot and put the red probe on the other hot. Tell me what you read.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
I get a reading of about 230

Ok so we are back to the control board, we have 230v going into the control board and 120v coming out to the bake and the broiler but the L2 which is the line 2 we have 0v which I'm afraid means new control. Sorry :(

1 last thing, check the control board for a replaceable fuse, some times the controls will have one on the line 2.

Customer: replied 7 years ago.

I find no fuses on the board or in-line on L2.

Ok then the control board needs to be replaced as originally suspected.

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